Longevity Risk: An Essay

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The report’s key findings are:

  • As life expectancy at 65 rises, outliving one’s resources poses a growing challenge.
  • This study explores how people perceive their life expectancy, options for handling longevity risk, and why few insure against it.
  • A survey of investors with over $100,000 in financial assets sheds new light on this topic:
    • About half of respondents would be willing to buy an annuity at prevailing market rates but just 12 percent actually do so.
    • Reasons for the gap may be that financial professionals do not routinely recommend annuities and actually buying them can be hard.

The Center for Retirement Research at Boston College gratefully acknowledges Jackson National Life Insurance Company for supporting this research.